COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Jersey Township trustee Ben Pieper confirmed to NBC4 Thursday afternoon that a nearly 3,200-acre area northeast of Columbus in Licking County will become a massive computer chip factory.
The development had been the subject of media reports this week, with Cleveland.com reporting Thursday that sources said Intel is the company behind the plan, which “could be the largest economic development project in state history.”
In a phone conversation, Pieper said he did not know the company building the semiconductor factory, but he said it will be a 10-year development project. It will also be backed by federal money, he added.
“I don’t know names specific to companies or anything like that but it supposedly goes all the way up to the Governor and the federal level, what they’re trying to do. It’s been in the works for quite a while I guess, so… that’s why they annexed 3200 acres from Jersey Township,” said Pieper.
The 3,190 acres of real estate sit in Jersey Township, just east of New Albany on the Franklin-Licking county line, and about a 30-minute drive from Downtown Columbus.
“This is going to change us from rural America to basically a suburb,” said Pieper.
New Albany city council last week voted to enter an annexation agreement with Jersey Township to take control of the massive slice of land that Pieper confirmed will be used for a computer chip plant.
Congressman Tim Ryan praised elected leaders in Ohio and Washington for landing the project and helping to address the nation’s chip shortage.
“There’s gonna be hurdles to come, and you get through those hurdles by working together. You get those hurdles by setting your partisan fights on the sideline and getting together on the same team so that you can solve those problems as they come up,” Ryan said
The Intel plant is expected to create 7,000 construction jobs and then another 3,000 positions once the plant is up and running.